Thursday, 30 December 2010

Ends and Beginnings

Don't panic, this post won't be as deep and angsty as its title might imply.

First off, the Binary Advent Candle experiment is over, for this year at least.  I already knew most of the candles were too small, and yesterday numbers 8, 4 and 1 all burnt themselves out.  8 and 4 not only finished themselves off, but also made heroic last-ditch attempts to set the entire five-candle block on fire too.  Fortunately we caught them before they sent the dining room up in smoke.  And since I could see that the end was coming, I lit number 2 half-way through dinner and let it expire in company with its comrades, even though it shouldn't have been lit for the correct binary formation on the 29th.

To be honest, I didn't think the setup would last as long as it did.  Even with several days missed, I was pleasantly surprised that it was still workable as late as the 29th despite the woefully inadequate choice of candles.

So now, the Mk. I is scorched, covered in wax in places where it shouldn't be, and has the remains of the number 8 candle embedded in its hole, where I won't be able to get it out without using sharp objects or something rather hot.  Here's a photo of the wreckage:

...but for all that, I think the experiment was a success.  People liked it (not least myself), and the principle has been proven.  I'll build a better Mk. II version next year with bigger candles.  And hopefully a better way of containing any escapee molten-wax molecules.

At the other end of the starting-and-ending spectrum, I've just done my first non-watercolour painting in a few years.  I did some work in acrylics at sixth form, but it's been a while since I took up a paintbrush for its own sake, and after three years of largely computer-based study I've started missing the analogue joi d'vivre of paints.  So I asked if I could have some paints and things for Christmas, and it was so.  So this morning, over breakfast, I did a painting of... breakfast.  Logical enough, I think, for the first painting of a new era.  It's acrylic on canvas, ~30x40 cm portrait, if you want to know.  Photo to follow once the thing's dried out and I've picked a title for it, if I remember (which I might not, but I'll try).

Speaking of new beginnings: only 4 days until all my webcomic postings resume for the new year.  The two-week hiatus is going by pretty quick, from my POV.

Umm... that's all for now, I think...

- The Colclough

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